This letter is in response to a March 13 letter to the editor from Dan Jimenez, titled "Elk Grove doing it right by including citizens." I felt the need to respond to Mr. Jimenez, since it is so counter to the environment of public engagement and open communication that the city of Galt has tried to embrace. In fact, one of the four major goals of the city is to "improve community involvement and two-way communication."
The Galt City Council works hard to communicate important information to the public through a variety of methods, including the city's website, quarterly newsletters, public notices in the local newspaper, press releases, email notifications and more. The city council meets twice a month on the first and third Tuesday at 7 p.m. The public is encouraged to attend and voice their opinions about items that are on the agenda, as well as those that aren't. We listen carefully to each comment made, and decisions by the city council are often swayed by comments made by the public.
The city also holds numerous workshops and public hearings throughout the year on a variety of important matters that are advertised in the newspaper and on the city's website. State law actually requires public hearings and notices on items such as the Housing Element of the General Plan that the city of Elk Grove is currently conducting. In addition to these required public hearings, the city of Galt frequently goes above and beyond what is required in order to engage in public discussion and solicit sincere input from the public.
As just one example, when the city of Galt went through its General Plan update a few years ago, the city held six community workshops, four focus group meetings, 11 joint city council/planning commission workshops, 24 special council meetings, 11 planning commission meetings and several other related public meetings.
Public participation is given the highest priority by the city council, and we work hard to ensure that all citizens are provided a voice with their local government. I invite everyone to stay informed on issues affecting the city and provide the council with your feedback. You can reach me directly by calling 209-366-7130, or email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
City of Galt